Nursery owner hits back after damning Ofsted report

A nursery owner has made an official complaint after her business was rated as inadequate across the board after its first Ofsted inspection.

Wednesday, 23rd May 2018, 4:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 23rd May 2018, 4:11 pm

Miss Kerry Driver lodged the complaint against Ofsted after the report criticised Victoria's Nursery in Padiham.

Ofsted took enforcement action against it by issuing a Welfare Requirements Notice with a stringent list of criteria for the nursery to meet.

Miss Driver said: "We are a new nursery and while we accept there are improvements that need to be made there are factual inaccuracies in the report.

"I have made an official complaint about the inspection and the inspector regarding the incorrect information contained in the report."

The inspection was carried out after concerns were raised to Ofsted about the nursery's ability to meet the requirements of registration and provide a quality provision for children.

The deadline for these requirements to be met was Monday.

In her report Ofsted inspector Stephanie Nixon described the leadership and management of the nursery as "inadequate and lacks organisation" which she said had resulted in several breaches to legal requirements.

She said that safeguarding was not effective as staff and managers at Victoria's Nursery in Padiham Road had insufficient knowledge of the signs and indicators of abuse and the procedures to follow in the event of an allegation against a member of staff.

Managers were also criticised for failing to share vital information with other agencies and, as a result, children are not protected from harm.

Inspectors said that policies in place for the use of mobile phones were not implemented by staff and this failing "significantly compromised" children's confidentiality and placed them at potential risk of harm.

The inspection also concluded that staff have not been provided with the necessary support to enable them to fulfill their roles and, as a result, some staff do not have an accurate overview of what children know and can do which affects their learning.

Children's transition into the nursery, which has eight members of staff and 34 children on roll, was also described as lacking organisation, with children not spending time in the room where they will be based.

As a result, parents are unable to build a relationship with their child's key person which affects their child's emotional well being.

Staff deployment was described as not meeting the emotional needs of older children. The report said that staff were frequently distracted and failed to recognise that children were extremely restless which resulted in unwanted behaviour.

Ofsted said that one of the nursery's strengths was the baby room where staff know the babies in their care well.

As a result, babies needs are met which promotes their emotional well being. Staff were praised for understanding their roles and responsibilities and for creating a calm and welcoming learning environment.

Inspectors said that some parents "spoke highly" of the nursery and they described the staff as "kind."

The nursery was also praised for providing a variety of freshly cooked food and snacks to help promote a healthy lifestyle.

The report said that young babies' early physical development is successfully promoted with staff providing resources, such as attractive balls and and light up toys to encourage tots' crawling and walking skills.

But activities for older children, such as gluing and painting, were criticised for not challenging them enough and they became bored and lost interest.

Inspectors said that older children's learning has not been monitored closely and, as a result, the provider and staff do not have an accurate picture of the progress their children are making.

Assessments are weak and the progress made by some children at the nursery since starting was limited.

Overall children were not acquiring the skills they need for school.

The criteria set out by Ofsted for the nursery to improve includes ensuring staff have up to date knowledge of safeguarding issues and that concerns about a child's welfare are reported to the appropriate agencies without delay.

The nursery also has to ensure that policies and procedures are implemented, improve arrangements for monitoring and supervision of staff to identify and act on weaknesses in practice and make sure staffing arrangements meet the emotional needs and development of children.

The nursery is also required to ensure that effective transition arrangements are put in place to help children become familiar with the nursery and build relationships with their parents.

The nursery also has to make sure that staff develop a secure understanding of assessment so that they rigorously and consistently monitor children's level of achievement, interests and learning styles.

This must be put in place to meet the requirements of the early years foundation stage.